Swat History

MENACE OF CORRUPTION

Three evils are as old as the human history on the planet. These evils are prostitution, begging and corruption. These flourishes where there is poverty, discrimination on the basis on caste, creed and ignorance. Many reformers have tried to eliminate these evils and some did have succeeded, like the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H) and the four pious caliphs after him. No one can claim before and after them, any achievement in this regard.

Before the establishment of the ‘Yousufzai State of Swat’ under the leadership of Miangul Abdul Wadud, based on the collective wisdom of the Jirga, all these evils did exist in ‘Pukhto’ age. The powerful Khans kept concubines called ‘andiwala’. Besides, this they favoured their own ‘dallah’ which was a form of nepotism.

All the well-off classes felt that education is the key to success in the new set up. They sent their sons to the next door neighbor town of Thana, where a high school was established in 1901. So, the Khans and the Sayyids, especially the maternal uncles of Wali Sahib, sent their youth to get modern education. The result was clear. The new administrative units of Tehsils (in Swat State) were on the merit of education, headed by them. So most of the Tehsildars, which the exception of a small numbers were from the big land lords or the Sayyids. Some critics exploited this and propagated as nepotism. But they ignored the lack of education in the middle or poor classes.

Later, much later indeed, when free education was provided to all classes of society in all accessible areas, men from common classes reached prominence in the State administration.

Most of the ten thousand State forces were from lower classes, from sepoy to Subedar. A small number went up above this, to high ranks. The Ruler himself was free of all administrative evils. He was probably the only one negating the maxim that ‘power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely’.

He had absolute powers over his subjects, its resources and the people living in its boundaries.  According to Russian official news agency, ‘TASS’, he was the most powerful man in the twentieth century. But he was not corrupt. Even his staunch critics cannot deny this fact.

But there were some black sheeps, who caused the otherwise welfare state, somewhat unwanted impression. I have myself discovered that if some cases of mishandling were brought to the Ruler’s notice, he never compromised on corruption. I brought two cases to his notice through my officer and when I testified before him, he took drastic action against the responsible official, removed them for service, sent them to jail and denied their service benefits. But, as Wali Sahib told to Fredrik Barth in the course of  interview, that the menace of corruption was more visible in the last two or three years.

But this was not limited to his tenure only. The most effective evidence is that the Wazir brothers who rose from nothing and at the time of their exile, no one in the whole state could outclass them in property, which was then confiscated in favour of the State by Badshah Sahib. This write up is not intended to malign some person or some family but to provide some venues for researchers to explore.

Fazal Raziq Shahab belongs to the historic village of Aboha, Swat. His writings on Swat State provides very useful information to the general readers and researchers. He remained Swat State functionary and thus observed the happenings of the State very closely. He is the author of two books and his Columns has been a regular feature of Daily Azadi, Bakhabarswat.com and Lafzuna.com.
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Fazal Raziq Shahab belongs to the historic village of Aboha, Swat. His writings on Swat State provides very useful information to the general readers and researchers. He remained Swat State functionary and thus observed the happenings of the State very closely. He is the author of two books and his Columns has been a regular feature of Daily Azadi, Bakhabarswat.com and Lafzuna.com.
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